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JERUSALEM, Jan 8 (Reuters) - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, whose original four-year term expires on Friday, faces a legitimacy challenge that Israel's Gaza war has only postponed.
How it plays out will affect Abbas's ability to pursue peace talks with Israel. These have so far proved fruitless, earning him only derision from Hamas, which preaches armed resistance...
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a message addressed to world nations on Tuesday condemned the atrocities of the Zionist regime and its supporters in Gaza Strip...
Israel's President, Shimon Peres, has declared that the Gaza Strip must not become a satellite site for the Islamic Republic of Iran.
"Our goals are clear: we do not want to make Gaza a satellite of Iran, and we don't want a ceasefire but the end of the terror," Peres said in an interview with Italian daily La Repubblica on Thursday.
January 6, 2009
What is Really Happening
I watched BBC World News for a timed hour yesterday. In that time I saw:
Pro-Israeli (including US government) speakers - 17
Pro-Palestinian speakers - 2
Mentions of Hamas Rockets as reason for war - 37
Mentions of illegal Israeli settlements - 0
Mentions of Palestinians killed by Israel during "ceasefire" - 2
Mentions of Sderot - 12
Mentions Sderot used to be Palestinian - 0
If you don't believe me, try it yourself.
What this background suggests strongly is that Israel launched its devastating attacks, starting on December 27, not simply to stop the rockets or in retaliation, but also for a series of unacknowledged reasons.
Iran Wants to Show Regional Power over Gaza Crisis
TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran wants to send a message to the new U.S. administration and Arab governments that it is a power to be reckoned with in the region by championing the cause of its Palestinian ally, Hamas, in its fight with Israel.
"The message from the Iranians (to Washington) is there is give and take. We can help you in Afghanistan, we can help you in Iraq, we can help you with Lebanon and Palestine, if you have good relations with us," said Iranian analyst Baqer Moin.
"We are a regional power and you have to acknowledge that and talk to us on that level if you want us to be cooperative on issues where you need us," the London-based analyst said.
Israel accuses Iran of stoking the violence by supplying arms to Hamas. Tehran, which does not recognize Israel, says it gives moral and financial support to the group that has been isolated by much of the Arab world and international community.
Analysts say it is not clear whether Iran encouraged Hamas not to renew its truce with Israel in December or pushed it to fire the rockets that Israel says it is trying to stop.
"They feel the way to maintain influence in this region is by having a strong Hezbollah and strong Hamas," said one Western diplomat, adding that if either Hamas's or Hezbollah's conflict with Israel were resolved "it would be a strategic catastrophe (for Iran)."
Iran's top authority, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who wears a Palestinian scarf, has criticized some Arabs for not doing enough and urged Muslims to do what they can to help.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's term in office expires on Friday 09/01/2009
According to Israeli media, Abbas's aides said he has no plans to step down in the near future, claiming that the PA's Basic Law allows him to stay in power for another year. PA Prime Minister Salaam Fayad told reporters on Thursday that the law calls for holding presidential and legislative elections simultaneously. And since the legislative elections are due to be held in January 2010, Abbas is entitled to stay in office for an additional year, he explained.